Roasted Cauliflower with Tomato, Garlic and Basil
- 1 medium head cauliflower (5 - 6" diameter, about 18 - 24 ounces) trimmed of leaves, lower stem removed (do not break up the head into flowerets!)
- 1 tablespoon plus 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
- 4 medium tomatoes, with juice, diced (or about 2 cups canned tomatoes with juice)
- 1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1/4 cup (packed) fresh basil leaves, washed, dried and chopped
- 1/2 cup frozen peas (optional)
- 1 green onion, cut in shreds (optional)
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste.
1. Preheat the oven to 375º.
2. Choose a pot capable of holding the whole cauliflower head submerged in water. Fill with water, leaving room for the cauliflower. Add 1 tablespoon of the salt. Bring to a boil over high heat.
3. Add the cauliflower head to the pot and blanch for 4 minutes. Remove to a side plate.
4. Place the tomatoes, onion, garlic and remaining half-teaspoon salt in a food processor and process until you have a paste.
5. In a sauté pan, melt the butter over medium-high heat and add the tomato mixture. Stir and sauté until the tomato mixture and the butter separate, about 5-6 minutes.
6. If using, add the peas. Remove from heat.
7. Add the basil to the tomato mixture and stir to combine.
8. Place the cauliflower in a roomy ovenproof dish and pour the tomato/basil mixture over it.
9. Bake uncovered in the preheated oven about 30 - 35 minutes.
Serve in the cooking vessel or on a flat plate. If desired, garnish with the green onion. Season to taste with freshly ground black pepper.
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